In the summer of 2019, I began to collect fallen bark with the intention of creating a series of cast-paper logs that would convey my admiration for the forest. Armed with a plethora of bark from a variety of trees, and a knot hole, I made plaster molds from these pieces, and then cast these forms with cotton pulp. Once collaged onto a cylindrical form, the cotton bark was painted with watercolor, and the texture was accentuated with chalk pastel.
From a distance the cast-paper logs look real, but upon closer inspection, the softness of the cotton bark is noticeable, as are the combinations and patterns of bark repeating on the surface. Spaces where bark is missing reveals handmade paper, which was made using a variety of pulps and pigments mixed together to resemble the interior sapwood of a tree. Free-motion embroidered moss and hand-dyed silk organza leaves accompany the work, adding texture and color to the installation. The leaf canopies add depth by casting shadows on the sculptures—a dappled light that sets the scene.
This work is an homage to nature’s beautiful textures, and engages the senses, encouraging a closer look. For a more immersive experience of this installation, play the Sounds of Missouri MP3 while you look at the photographs!
Installation at the George Waters Art Gallery, Elmira College, Elmira, NY
Installation at the Rosalie 'Roz' Steiner Art Gallery, Genesee Community College, Batavia, NY
Journey of the Logs, Three Creeks Conservation Area, Columbia, MO